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Zephyr Aircraft Engines: Top Quality and Service at an Affordable Price

Zephyr Aircraft Engines was started in June 1992 by Charlie Melot and Herman Vollrath.

Charlie, in the engine business since 1972, left Mattituck as sales & production manager to head up G&N for four years, followed by another four as managing partner in Penn Yan Aero. Herman worked for Zephyr Aviation, where he started his aviation career, then went on to Zephyr Engine Service as a lead mechanic for 10 years, building well over 1,800 engines.

Building on Charlie’s 20 years of management and high-quality customer service, coupled with Herman’s near genius  mechanical ability, their goal was to create a boutique shop offering the best possible quality and service at an affordable price. Over the years their reputation grew and spread. In the 1990s, Kas Thomas TBO Advisor magazine often gave Zephyr high marks, culminating in a full feature of Zephyr in 1999. Aviation Consumer gave Zephyr honorable mention in
2000, followed by a top 5 in its 2005 engine shop survey. That goal was, in part, reached by this year’s March survey, giving Zephyr the No. 1 spot.

Since opening, Zephyr has produced about 2,000 engine overhauls and teardowns. While most are in Florida and the southeastern United States, Zephyr engines are flying in England, Germany, Switzerland, Australia, New Zealand, and a number of western states.

All Zephyr overhauls are performed strictly to the manufacturers’ new parts limits, meet and often exceed manufacturers mandatory parts replacement requirements, and bear a two-year, 500-hour TBO prorated warranty.

Zephyr is located on the Zephyrhills Airport, which has two 5,000-foot runways, located 15 miles northwest of Lakeland,
Florida. As an FAA-approved repair station (#VI4R597M), Zephyr offers removal and installation service and all types of engine repairs and overhauls of most common direct drive Lycoming and Continental engines.

Both Charlie and Herman are pilots. Herman flies the company’s 180-hp Warrior and Charlie, with over 10,000 hours in 50
years flying, has owned a Piper Twin Comanche for 17 years.